Having just his first ride in Britain’s fourth Classic of the season, Padraig Beggy was left ecstatic as his mount Wings Of Eagles caused a 40/1 upset in the 238th running of the Investec Derby.
One of six runners in the race for Ballydoyle maestro Aidan O’Brien, Wings Of Eagles was the second least fancied according to the betting.
In the early stages, he was held up second last of the 18-strong field while stable mates Douglas Macarthur and The Anvil set a brisk pace some eight-lengths ahead of the main bulk of the field.
Homeward-bound Douglas Macarthur still held the advantage into the final two furlongs but favourite Cracksman bore down on the leader.
Ryan Moore on Ballydoyle’s seeming number one hope Cliffs Of Moher came with what looked a winning run a furlong out and got to the front from Cracksman.
All the while Wings Of Eagles made relentless progress under Beggy and with a strong late burst got up to win going away by three quarters of a length.
“You’re riding one for Aidan O’Brien in colours like these so you don’t worry about the price they always have a chance,” reflected Beggy.
“He gave me a great feel going down probably pulled a little hard. I had a bit of unluck in running but I probably got there at the right time in the end.”
He gave me a great feel going down
A son of 2011-winner Pour Moi, Wings Of Eagles caught the eye with a late-finishing effort behind another stable mate, Venice Beach, in the Group 3 Chester Vase last month.
O’Brien said: “We thought he was a very nice horse last year ran a lovely race at the back-end in a two-year-old race in France then had a lovely run in Chester.
“I can’t tell you how delighted we are to have him [Beggy] working with us.”